A Handbook of Transport Economics
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A Handbook of Transport Economics

Edited by André de Palma, Robin Lindsey, Emile Quinet and Roger Vickerman

Bringing together insights and perspectives from close to 70 of the world’s leading experts in the field, this timely Handbook provides an up-to-date guide to the most recent and state-of-the-art advances in transport economics. The comprehensive coverage includes topics such as the relationship between transport and the spatial economy, recent advances in travel demand analysis, the external costs of transport, investment appraisal, pricing, equity issues, competition and regulation, the role of public–private partnerships and the development of policy in local bus services, rail, air and maritime transport.
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Chapter 21: The Direct and Wider Impacts of Transport Projects: A Review

Peter Mackie, Daniel Graham and James Laird


Peter Mackie, Daniel Graham and James Laird INTRODUCTION Economic appraisal of transport projects, if dated from the studies of Coburn et al. (1960) and Foster and Beesley (1963), is approaching its fiftieth birthday. Many books and reports have been written on this subject and the aim of this chapter is to review specifically the linkage between transport and the economy. With that in mind we review the measurement of the principal direct benefits that when transmitted through into the wider economy give rise to the indirect benefits – the measurement of which we also review. To illustrate the discussion we draw heavily on European, but particularly UK, practice. To define our boundaries further, this chapter does not cover transport and land-use modeling, environmental and safety impacts of transport projects, nor most aspects of capital budgeting. These are all important appraisal topics, but out of scope. The context we are assuming is that of a layered approach to the assessment of projects. The top layer is some form of strategic goal setting and broad analysis of policy and strategies against those goals. The recent paper by the UK Department for Transport ‘Developing a Sustainable Transport System’ (DfT, 2008) is an example, although the analytical content to support it is not yet fully developed. The bottom level is that of detailed design and choice between numerous technical alternatives, which is likely to be conducted on cost-effectiveness and value-engineering principles. Economic appraisal of transport projects is a pivotal intermediate layer in the overall assessment...

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